Companies that support remote working are more likely to be inclusive employers, a new study has shown.
The research, conducted by employee benefits platform Glint, compiled responses from a survey carried out among workers at 600 global companies.
Respondents working at “remote work friendly” firms were 14 percent more likely to say they felt safe to speak their minds and were nine percent more likely to say that management teams valued different perspectives, compared to staff at companies that had not embraced remote working.
“In many ways remote work has equalised opportunities for employees to be heard and seen,” explained Steven Buck, the company’s head of people science (EMEA).
“In a virtual-work environment, every meeting looks the same, and each person takes up the same screen real estate, from the CEO to the intern.
“As organisations reexamine how to foster diversity, inclusion and belonging in the new world of work, early signs indicate they’d do well to build on virtual work and expand habits, programmes and tools that help people bring their authentic selves to work.”
The poll probed the elements more likely to contribute to a great workplace culture and found that these changed dramatically between 2019 and 2020, with half of the top ten drivers in 2020 not present in the original list from 2019.
In 2020, employees considered having the ability to learn and grow as the strongest driver of workplace culture, up eight positions on the previous year.
Respondents also said that having a sense of belonging was now material to overall workplace happiness. In fact, there were so many responses along these lines that having a sense of belonging was second most important factor in shaping corporate culture, overall, in 2020, up 12 percent from the previous year.
“The way we work changed drastically in 2020, Glint’s Steven Buck added. “Employees want more from their employers now than just a pay packet.”
“They want to be challenged, they want to work in a space where they can bring their whole selves, and they want leaders to mean what they say and say what they mean.”